efe-epaBeijing

China will see 2.99 billion trips during 40-day travel rush for the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday, an official said Friday.

The 40-day period, which is the peak travel season in the country, will begin Jan.21 and end Mar.1.

Citing Lian Weiliang, deputy head of the National Development and Reform Commission, state-run agency Xinhua said the 2.99 billion-figure is a 0.6 percent increase over the trips made last year.

Around 4,800 trains will operate to cater to the rush of travelers both before and after the festival, 3,500 of which will be high-speed trains, an increase of more than 17 percent over last year.

There will also be 532,000 flights scheduled during those 40 days, a 10 percent year-on-year increase.

Some 230,000 volunteers will be at hand to help the travelers during the travel rush, Lian added.

Hundreds of millions of people return to their hometowns to be with their families during Chinese New Year celebrations.

This year, the Chinese New Year falls on Feb.5.